The design of practicable systems for elderly support that develops through Design for All agendas in ICT development are enabled by particular front-end usercentered and experience-centered design methods. From the outset, what are sought are not “problems” in an elderly home or lifestyle, but “opportunities,” where either positive behaviors and technology appropriations by elderly individuals or the emergence of speculative scenarios can highlight and inspire the design of systems and services with broad applicability and interest. Shifting from a need-based approach to an opportunity based one when designing ICT solutions for elderly people further creates market and technical solutions not normally revealed when ICT and engineering are used as a means of “solving problems,” presumed or otherwise. Using user-centered design techniques in elderly peoples' local communities and support networks, design drives beyond usability and the often too-narrow focus of these solutions. Herein, this argument is supported through the description of a design process undertaken within “FOOD,” a European Union Ambient Assisted Living project focusing on the development of services for new kitchen technologies and environments, aiming at supporting the autonomy and independence of elderly people in their own homes. The FOOD project design process and initial service concepts derived from the opportunities areas mapped out through fieldwork with the elderly are presented.
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